June 30, 2022

Paris: A Quieter City

The clicks of wheeled luggage, a conversation behind louvred windows, music in the distance, a plane overhead – and yes, somewhere there are cars.  It’s evening in La Marais, and it’s surprisingly quiet.  

My guess is that Paris is actually getting quieter – especially as the city expands its micromobility network, pedestrianizes streets, reduces speed limits (and limits vehicles) while electrifying transit and, for that matter, everything else.   And it’s not just Paris.

It goes against our expectations and intuition, but even Vancouver may be getting quieter in those places that are getting denser.

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  1. Vancouver is definitely not getting quieter as it’s getting denser. Buskers blasting amplified music in our beach parks all year round; pop-up raves in our parks; park users playing small radios, iPhones etc over mini-speakers, even on designated “quiet beaches”; party boats blasting techno-pop in the harbour; illegal fireworks; drivers playing loud music with windows down; cyclists playing music over tiny speakers as they ride; high end supercars; loud motorcycles; constant drone of freighters in the harbour; constant construction noise everywhere and more expected as the city goes on a tower building frenzy; constant sound of gas powered leaf blowers and other lawn equipment; power washers; small planes, helicopters and jets overhead; police sirens, ambulances and firetrucks. And then there’s the hovercraft! It’s never ending and is only getting worse, as many Vancouverites consider that unless you’re making a lot of noise, you’re not having fun. And if you criticize the noise, you’re called “no fun” and told to move to the burbs. Enjoy the quiet Paris while you can and please bring us some of that quiet.

  2. Vancouver is definitely not getting quieter as it’s getting denser. Buskers blasting amplified music in our beach parks all year round; pop-up raves in our parks; park users playing small radios, iPhones etc over mini-speakers, even on designated “quiet beaches”; party boats blasting techno-pop in the harbour; illegal fireworks; drivers playing loud music with windows down; cyclists playing music over tiny speakers as they ride; high end supercars; loud motorcycles; constant traffic; constant drone of freighters in the harbour; constant construction noise everywhere and more expected as the city goes on a tower building frenzy; all the trucks and vehicles servicing that construction; subway construction; garbage trucks and diesel buses; constant sound of gas powered leaf blowers and other lawn equipment; power washers; small planes, helicopters and jets overhead; police sirens, ambulances and firetrucks. And then there’s the hovercraft! It’s never ending and is only getting worse, as many Vancouverites consider that unless you’re making a lot of noise, you’re not having fun. And if you criticize the noise and ask for quiet, you’re called “no fun” and told to move to the burbs. Enjoy the quiet Paris while you can and please bring us some of that quiet.

  3. Nonsense. Vancouver is full of self entitled assholes who feel that they can make as much noise as they want. Considering that noise is a top concern of residents it’s surprising more politicians don’t take it seriously.

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